Response Times for Robberies in Eastern Dallas Double

Police car driving on the street with sirens on and lights blinking. | Image by Ilya Andriyanov/Shutterstock

Police are taking about one hour longer to respond to robbery calls in eastern Dallas than in other parts of the city amid the Dallas Police Department’s ongoing police shortage.

So far this year, it has taken officers 174.2 minutes to arrive at such calls in DPD’s Northeast Division and 170.8 minutes in the Southeast Division. The citywide average for robbery calls is currently 117.8 minutes, according to the City of Dallas Open Data response times dashboard.

Northeast Division’s average response time for robberies in 2022 was 67.9 minutes, while the Southeast Division’s was 97.3 minutes. Taken together, it took officers 82.2 minutes on average to respond to such calls in eastern Dallas last year. Now, it takes 172.4 minutes.

As reported by The Dallas Express, the department has fewer than 3,200 sworn officers. However, a City analysis previously advised officials that Dallas needs around three officers for every 1,000 residents, putting an effective staffing level at roughly 4,000 officers.

Calls to the police are assigned a priority designation (1-4) based on the seriousness of the situation, with P1 calls representing extreme emergencies. Robberies are categorized as P2 calls. The current citywide average for all P2 calls is 107.1 minutes. Last year, the average was 64 minutes.

DPD Police Chief Eddie Garcia has been vocal about the need to simultaneously recruit new officers while also retaining veterans.

“The reality of it is … I can have a class of 50 people that start Academy today, but we’re not going to recognize their efficiency and their effectiveness for a year and a half after the Academy and training and everything else. So equally as important, if not more so, is the retention of men and women,” Garcia told The Dallas Express in a previous interview.

The police shortage has also affected Downtown Dallas, which regularly logs considerably higher crime rates than Fort Worth’s downtown area. The latter is reportedly patrolled by a dedicated neighborhood unit that works alongside private security guards.

Downtown is located within DPD’s Central Division, where it currently takes police 43.4 minutes to respond to a call about a robbery.

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